Shilpa & Shane Warne are poker pals

Mumbai, April 01: It is learnt that Shilpa and her Royals are trying their hand at the card game to relax and have fun. Leading the pack is Shane Warne, who is a champ at the game.

The actress confirms, “I learned to play poker a year back. Poker is not gambling, like most people believe. It’s an interesting mind game where you try and play the opponents’ cards. Sometimes when the players are relaxing, we have a game or two for fun.”

CIA given details of British Muslim students

London, April 01: Personal information concerning the private lives of almost 1,000 British Muslim university students is to be shared with US intelligence agencies in the wake of the Detroit bomb scare.

Former pope knew of abuse, shows 1963 letter

Los Angeles, April 01: A newly-released letter to then-Pope Paul VI indicates the Vatican was aware of clergy abuse in the US nearly five decades ago.

In the 1963 letter released yesterday, the head of a Roman Catholic order that oversaw treatment of paedophile priests tells the pope he recommends removing paedophile priests from active ministry.

The letter is a summary of the Rev Gerald MC Fitzgerald’s thoughts on problem priests that appears to have been requested by the pope after Fitzgerald’s 1963 visit to the Vatican.

Education is now a fundamental right of every child

New Delhi, April 01: Nearly eight years after the Constitution was amended to make education a fundamental right, the government today implemented a historic law to provide free and compulsory education to all children in age group of 6-14 years .

The 86th Constitutional amendment making education a fundamental right was passed by Parliament in 2002. The Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, a law to enable the implementation of the fundamental right, was passed by Parliament last year. Both the Constitutional amendment and the new law came into force from today.

Cigarettes may contain pig blood

Islamabad, April 01: Cigarettes may contain traces of pig blood which, if confirmed, can lead to protests against tobacco companies that refuse to disclose the ingredients used in making the product, an Australian expert was quoted by Pakistan’s Online news agency as saying.

A study conducted in the Netherlands has identified 185 different industrial uses of the pig, including the use of its haemoglobin in cigarette filters, which religious groups could find to be “very offensive”, Simon Chapman, professor of public health at the University of Sydney, said here Wednesday.

Get counted, National Census begins today

New Delhi, April 01: The largest census exercise ever to be attempted in the history of mankind will kickstart on Thursday to cover India’s 1.2 billion population in one single database.

The Rs 2,200 crore 2011 National Census project, in which President Pratibha Patil will be the first person to be enumerated, will see engagement of 2.5 million people who will ensure that every citizen of the country comes under it.

Israeli gunmen invade Palestinian buildings

Gaza, April 01: Armed Israel settlers have invaded Palestinian-owned buildings and lands designated by the Palestinian Authority for the construction of the first centrally-planned Palestinian town called Rawabi.

Around 60 settlers associated with the group “Youth for the Land of Israel” attempted to take over the area hanging Israeli flags on the buildings. They also conducted prayers there.

The incident occurred on Wednesday, near the central West Bank town of Bir Zeit.

BJP not anti-Islam, but against terror outfits: Gadkari

Kolkata, April 01: The BJP on Wednesday denied allegations of being anti-Islam, saying it was against organisations like al Qaeda, ISI and Lashkar-e-Toiba which carry out terrorism in the name of religion.

“The BJP is sometimes accused of being anti-Islam. I say, if it were so, why did Atal Bihari Vajpayee suggest the name of APJ Abdul Kalam for the post of President?” BJP president Nitin Gadkari told a citizen’s convention.

Judge: US wiretapping on Islamic charity illegal

Washington, April 01: A federal judge has ruled that the government is liable for illegally wiretapping an Islamic charity without a valid search warrant.

US District Judge Vaughn Walker in San Francisco said on Wednesday that attorneys for the Al-Haramain Islamic Foundation, once based in Oregon, could pursue civil remedies for being subjected in 2004 to warrantless domestic surveillance under an anti-terrorism program put into place by the Bush administration after the September 11, 2001, attacks on the US.

Teen sold stepsister for party sex: Police

Trenton, April 01: Police have arrested a 15-year-old girl they say prostituted herself and her seven-year-old stepsister to have sex with as many as seven men and boys at a weekend party near their home in a crime-plagued neighbourhood.

Trenton police Capt Joseph Juniak said on Wednesday that the older girl started by taking money to have sex with several men at the party in a high-rise apartment. The teen then gave some of the money she had collected to the younger girl to let the men start touching her, Juniak said.

Communal riots cause 1,000 cr loss

Hyderabad, April 01: The on-going communal disturbance in Hyderabad for the last three days resulted in the lost of about Rs.1,000 crore.

According to rough estimates, the city has suffered financial loss on several accounts. All shops and establishments in the Old City have remained close since the trouble intensified on Monday. There are over 50,000 shops in the areas which are presently hit by violence. They include the prominent markets like Pathergatti, Lad Bazar, Charminar and Mir Alam Mandi.

Osama got all it wrong: Muslim scholars

Paris, April 01: Prominent Muslim scholars have recast a famous medieval fatwa on jihad, arguing that the religious edict radical Islamists often cite to justify killing cannot be used in a globalized world that respects faith and civil rights.

A conference in Mardin in southeastern Turkey declared the fatwa by 14th century scholar Ibn Taymiyya rules out militant violence and the medieval division of the world into a “house of Islam” and “house of unbelief” no longer applies.

Hyderabad police start removing religious flags

Hyderabad, April 01: As a dispute over religious flags triggered the communal riots in Hyderabad, the city police have decided to remove all religious flags and banners from public places.

Police Commissioner A.K. Khan told that Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) would remove all religious banners and flags in the city.

Turn Saddam’s villas into gold

Baghdad, April 01: Saddam Hussein made his palaces a desert paradise, but now his hometown is seeking foreign investors to turn the late dictator’s playground into a tourist mecca.

Local officials see the 76 abandoned Saddam villas sprawled across hundreds of hectares (acres) as a potential gold mine for Tikrit`s cash-strapped Salahuddin province.

“These villas only need rehabilitation and a few other things to turn the whole area into a wonderful tourism site,” Jewher Hamad al-Fahel, the head of Salahuddin`s investment commission, told.

Sex Swami Nityananda wants bail

Bangalore, April 01: After failing to get a stay on investigations, tainted Nityananda moves Session’s Court for anticipatory bail

After failing twice for getting a stay on the ongoing investigations, tainted Swami Nityananda today moved the Session’s Court seeking relief in the form of an anticipatory bail. Admitting the petition, the court has posted the mater to Thursday directing the Ramnagar police to file their objection.

Sania to be second wife of Shoaib?

Hyderabad, April 01: A day after television channels and newspapers carried the celebrity marriage report between Sania Mirza and Shoaib Malik, problems have surfaced to haunt the couple.

The Pakistani cricketer has not divorced a Hyderabadi woman who claims to be his first wife.

The father of Ayesha Siddiqui- the Hyderabad based girl who has in the past alleged that she was married to Shoaib, threatened to take legal action against the Pakistani cricketer.